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What is Pink Tax?

By News Canvass | Jan 10, 2023

The term “pink tax” describes the hidden price that women must pay for goods that are created and promoted just for them. Although there is no true “pink tax,” many clothing items made for women are imported at greater rates than their male equivalents.

It has been discovered that hundreds of goods and services have a pink tax. Several state and municipal authorities have laws that forbid gender-based price discrimination. Despite bills being introduced, the federal government of the United States does not.

What is pink tax?

pink tax

The amount that women must pay for products that are made just for them and that are advertised as such is known as the “Pink Tax.”  The name of this phenomenon, which is derived from the observation that many of the afflicted products are pink, is typically attributed to gender-based pricing discrimination. It refers to the price differential between male and female clients for virtually the same goods and services. The pink tax is found in a number of sectors, from clothing and personal care products to children’s services and toys. Women are charged more than men for the same or similar item.

Pink tax meaning?

pink tax

The phrase “pink tax” is frequently used to describe price-based discrimination; the name comes from the misconception that many of the products that are affected are pink and are marketed to women. It simply refers to the additional cost added to products that are specifically targeted toward women and priced more than those for males. In other words, we may also think of it as a factor in the underpayment of women. The term “pink tax” in economics refers to business pricing practices or governmental regulations that increase the transaction costs (often higher taxes or prices) for women. To increase their profit, the businesses employ the selling strategy known as price discrimination.

Men and women frequently purchase identical everyday goods. However, studies reveal that consumer goods promoted and advertised to women often cost more than equivalent goods offered to men. A “pink tax” is the term used to describe this inequality.

Personal care items are among the industries with the highest visibility of gender-based price discrepancies. These consist of items like deodorants, soaps, lotions, and razor blades that are sold to either men or women.

One government research in the US examined 800 gender-specific items from almost 100 brands. According to the study, similar personal care items marketed to women were 13% more expensive on average than comparable items marketed to men.

Recognizing the burden that taxes on tampons and other feminine sanitary goods inflict on women, particularly those with lower incomes, advocates have long fought to reduce or remove these levies. Several nations have done away with taxes on tampons and other feminine items, including Australia, Canada, India, and Rwanda.

About the pink tax in India?

pink tax

Only 23% of Indians, according to research, are aware of the term “pink tax” and its effects on the country’s economy. Male contraceptives were exempt from tax because they were viewed as necessary, whereas tampons were viewed as a luxury, and feminine hygiene items like sanitary napkins and tampons were subject to a 12–14% GST tax.

The concept is based on the reality that our culture holds women to high standards for both their outward looks and internal behavior. Women tend to spend more money than males do on things like clothing, transportation, personal cleanliness, and makeup because they are socialized from an early age to act or make particular decisions.

Only after a persistent effort by activists did the Indian government in 2018 reduce the 12 percent GST on sanitary napkins. Given that only a small portion of the population uses menstruation sanitary goods, this would obviously not be a case of the pink tax. However, it is still crucial to be aware of this harsh tax on necessities because doing so simply increases the pink tax’s unwarranted financial weight.

In Hindi, it was referred to as Lahu ka Lagaan, which means “blood tax.” Indian temporary finance minister Piyush Goyal announced the campaign’s victory, saying he was “confident all mothers and sisters will be very glad to learn that sanitary pads are now 100% exempt from tax.” Nine Movement founder and activist Amar Tulsiyan went even further, calling it “a great win for everyone” in India. Period poverty is a problem that affects women worldwide, not only in India.

Examples of pink tax?

For men, a disposable razor in blue or black costs about Rs. 30, while a pink disposable razor for women costs about Rs 60. It holds true for salon services as well. Men typically pay roughly Rs. 100-150 for a haircut, however, women may pay up to Rs. 500-800 or even more. Similarly to this, the most affordable 150 ml deodorant for males costs 120, while the price of an important women’s deodorant in the same quantity on the online shopping site starts at 150. Simply put, items that are offered largely to women and are advertised primarily in pink are more expensive.


To reduce the pink tax, actions are being taken. In order to ensure that women participate fully and equally in the economy, the United Nations has urged nations all around the world to take action to end the pink tax.

The year is 2022, and as we work to advance toward establishing an egalitarian society without discrimination against men, women, and all other genders, items like the Pink Tax and the Tampon Tax serve to make it gender-biased. The price of products that women must buy but men do not, such as tampons is another aspect of the pink tax that researchers and decision-makers examine.

Advocates have long pushed to lessen or eliminate these levies because they understand the hardship that taxes on tampons and other feminine sanitary products place on women, particularly those with lower incomes. Taxes on tampons and other feminine products have been eliminated in a number of countries, including Australia, Canada, India, and Rwanda.

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